B.S. in Biology, Richard Stockton College, New Jersey
The drill (Mandrillus leucophaeus) is a large semi-terrestrial primate from the family Cercopithecidae (Old-world monkeys). This species is found only in the coastal tropics of the Gulf of Guinea; endemic to SE Nigeria, SW Cameroon, and Bioko Island, Equatorial Guinea. As the largest potential predator on Bioko Island this species holds particular ecologic importance to its environment. Few direct studies concerning the ecology of drills, particularly on the Bioko Island subspecies (M. l. poensis) have been completed, leaving much unknown. Due to its high endangered species rank, now is the time to learn as much as possible about drill ecology in order to aid in management efforts.
I intend to focus my research on various aspects of the life of this amazing animal. In completing my PhD I hope to answer questions pertaining to drill daily and seasonal movements, resource requirements and acquisition, and what measures they have taken to cope with the extremely high seasonal rainfalls (~11m per year) found on areas of Bioko Island. I plan on utilizing the latest field techniques, including GIS, camera traps, fecal sample analysis, and GPS telemetry, as well as looking into the historical dataset collected by the BBPP in the last 19 years. The ultimate goal of this project is to assist in aiming management actions based on the implications of the results.
After graduating from undergrad with a B.S. in Biology from the Richard Stockton College of NJ, I spent two years assisting on a variety of field projects. I have worked extensively with diamondback terrapins and many bird species in remote areas of the US, Australia, and Chile. In the winter of 2007 I participated on the 2008 Caldera Expedition and subsequently joined Dr. Hearn’s lab here at Drexel University. I have spent nearly 9 months on Bioko since my first trip last year and have fallen in love with the adventure, people, terrain, and ecosystems packed within this small island. The abundance and diversity of all types of animals found here is incredible and the lure of discovery awaits around every turn.
Cronin, D. T., D. Bocuma Meñe, T. B. Butynski, J. M. E. Echube, G. W. Hearn, S. Honarvar, J. R. Owens, and C. P. Bohome. 2010. Opportunities Lost: The Rapidly Deteriorating Conservation Status of the Monkeys on Bioko Island, Equatorial Guinea (2010). A Report to the Government of Equatorial Guinea by the Bioko Biodiversity Protection Program, Drexel University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Jacob R. OwensDrexel University
Department of Biology
3245 Chestnut St.
Papadakis Integrated Sciences Building, Rm. 503
Philadelphia, PA 19104
Office: PISB 503Phone: (215) 895-6906